Lindsey Vonn edged Sofia Goggia in a foretaste of the Pyeongchang Olympic downhill on Saturday Kyler Fackrell Jersey , raising her career total to 80 World Cup victories.
The American standout beat Goggia by two hundredths of a second as their ongoing rivalry in Alpine skiing’s fastest discipline continued.
”It’s a big number,” Vonn said of her 80 wins, just six short of the all-time record set by Swedish great Ingemar Stenmark in the 1980s.
”I remember when I got my 50th here, I never thought I would even get close to Annemarie Moser-Proell’s record (of 62 wins) and now I am getting close to Stenmark’s. It’s incredible,” she said.
”Also the timing of this win, coming into the Olympics, I really feel strong mentally and physically.”
Vonn skied a solid run but didn’t seem to go to the limits as she trailed Italian rival Goggia by 0.08 at the last split time. However, Vonn overcame the deficit in the final section.
”I definitely skied aggressively, don’t get me wrong, but I didn’t leave all the cards on the table,” Vonn said. ”I hold those extra aces for the Olympics.”
It was Vonn’s second straight downhill win after Cortina, Italy, two weeks ago. She and Goggia are the only racers with more than one downhill victory this season.
Cornelia Huetter of Austria was 0.13 behind in third, and Vonn’s teammate, Breezy Johnson, finished fourth for her career-best result.
Earlier, Johnson and Vonn posted the fastest times in a mandatory training session two hours before the race, after training was canceled on the previous two days.
Vonn’s joy was tempered, however Jake Ryan Jersey , by a crash that ruled her teammate Jacqueline Wiles out of the Olympics with a knee injury.
Shortly after completing her run and taking the lead in the race, Vonn saw on a large video screen in the finish area how Wiles lost balance after skiing off the course, fell and went into the safety netting. Wiles had to be transported off the hill by helicopter.
Wiles was set to compete in her second Olympics. She had her second career podium by placing third in the race that Vonn won in Cortina two weeks ago.
Also, Laurenne Ross, who’s working her way back after a severe knee injury, crashed hard but she stood up and eventually skied down.
”It was really hard to actually be happy and excited and celebrate because Jackie is in the hospital,” said Vonn about Wiles, who has been financially supported by Vonn’s foundation.
”It’s a really rough day for the whole team,” Vonn said. ”I am happy that Laurenne wasn’t hurt. She will be really sore tomorrow but at least her knee is OK.”
Another downhill on the Kandahar course is scheduled for Sunday, the last World Cup race before the Olympics, and Vonn was expecting another close duel with Goggia.
The Italian edged Vonn in both speed races that were held as test events on the Olympic hill in South Korea last year.
”She is always risking everything, she’s the person that I have to beat,” said the American, who is chasing another Olympic downhill medal to add to the gold she won in Vancouver 2010.
”She is a personality that is really needed on the World Cup. We are playing a little game with each other: Who has the hundredths, you know. It makes it more exciting for us and also for the spectators.”
Goggia was smiling and hugged Vonn afterward.
”From the start gate to the red finish line, it’s a battle. But after, we are friends,” Goggia said. ”This is the rivalry that I like. It’s really fun and challenging for me.”
The Italian’s daredevil style of racing has sometimes been seen as similar to Bode Miller’s approach, but Goggia laughs off any comparisons with him.
”It would be a great honor just to have one percent of Bode Seth Jones Jersey ,” she said. ”I am far away from him. I am a show girl on the skis sometimes and that’s the only thing we have in common. He has a class that I will never reach.”
Drew Brees passed for 376 yards and two touchdowns, and the New Orleans Saints held off Carolina’s late comeback bid to seal a 31-26 victory in their NFC wild-card game on Sunday.
The Panthers had a first down on the Saints 26-yard line with 58 seconds left, but heavy pressure by All-Pro defensive end Cameron Jordan a couple plays later induced an intentional grounding penalty on Carolina quarterback Cam Newton, making it third-and-25 on the Saints 34 and a required 10-second runoff left 22 seconds on the clock.
After an incompletion in the end zone on third down, Vonn Bell sacked Newton on a safety blitz, ensuring the Saints (12-5) swept all three meetings with Carolina (11-6) this season, in addition to winning their first playoff game in four seasons.
Brees’ touchdowns went for 80-yards to Ted Ginn and 9 yards to tight end Josh Hill. Fullback Zach line and running back Alvin Kamara each ran for short touchdowns.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) – Blake Bortles put together one decent drive all day, doing as much with his legs as his arm, and the defensive-minded Jacksonville Jaguars eked out an ugly and sometimes unwatchable 10-3 victory against the Buffalo Bills in an AFC wild-card game Sunday.
In the postseason for the first time since January 2008, the third-seeded Jaguars (11-6) advanced to play at No. 2 seed Pittsburgh next week.
The sixth-seeded Bills (9-8) will head home after ending the longest, current playoff drought in North American professional sports.
Bortles was a big reason Jacksonville won the game and a big reason it was so close. This was far from a passing clinic. It was more like a painful exercise in overcoming poor passing.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Marcus Mariota led Tennessee to three second-half touchdowns, incredibly throwing one of his TD passes to himself , and the Titans rallied from a 21-3 deficit to beat the Kansas City Chiefs 22-21 on Saturday for their first playoff win in 14 years.
Mariota threw for 205 yards and two scores, including the 22-yard go-ahead strike to Eric Decker with just over six minutes left that ushered the Titans into the divisional round of the playoffs.
They’ll head to New England or Pittsburgh next week.
Derrick Henry had a career-high 156 yards rushing and another score for Tennessee (10-7), while a defense that was fileted by Alex Smith and the Chiefs (10-7) during the first half pitched a shutout in the second half – dooming the Kansas City franchise to another humiliating postseason defeat.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons showed the upstart Los Angeles Rams what playoff poise is all about.
Ryan passed for 218 yards and hit Julio Jones for an 8-yard touchdown with 5:48 to play, and the defending NFC champion Falcons advanced from the wild-card round with a methodical 26-13 victory over the Rams on Saturday night.
Devonta Freeman rushed for an early score and Matt Bryant kicked four field goals for the Falcons (11-6), who spoiled the Rams’ first playoff game in 13 years while showing off the postseason poise they earned from last season’s journey to the Super Bowl.
Atlanta never trailed at the Coliseum while winning playoff games in consecutive seasons for the first time in franchise history.
The Falcons advanced to face the top-seeded Eagles on Saturday in Philadelphia.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Brandon Ingram had 20 points and seven assists Sonny Milano Jersey , and the Los Angeles Lakers snapped a nine-game losing streak with a 132-113 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday night.
Julius Randle had 15 points and nine rebounds in this sixth straight start, while Lonzo Ball finished with 13 points, 10 assists and six rebounds.
Los Angeles led by as many as 26 points – its biggest margin this season – and enjoyed a strong shooting night. The Lakers made 55.8 percent of their field goals, and shot 44.4 percent from 3-point range. Even free throws went in for the Lakers, who came into Sunday as the worst team in the league in that category. Los Angeles made 20 of 25.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Keita Bates-Diop scored a career-high 32 points, and Ohio State stunned No. 1 Michigan State 80-64 on Sunday.
The overachieving Buckeyes put together an electrifying 12-0 run to finish the first half and kept their foot on the gas to give first-year coach Chris Holtmann a signature win.
Ohio State (13-4, 4-0 Big Ten) won for its third straight in taking down the best team it is likely to see this season. The mistake-prone Spartans (15-2, 3-1) lost for the first time in the last 15 games, dating back to a seven-point loss to then-No. 1 Duke on Nov. 14.
KAPALUA, Hawaii (AP) – A new year brought out the best in Dustin Johnson, who powered his way to an 8-under 65 and an eight-shot victory in the Sentry Tournament of Champions.
In a field that featured the top five players in the world, Johnson made a strong opening statement that a No. 1 ranking he has held for nearly a year might be difficult to take away.
Johnson stretched a two-shot lead to six shots at the turn, then delivered the biggest moment of the week with a drive on the par-4 12th hole that stopped 6 inches from the cup for a tap-in eagle. He also drove the par-4 14th hole.
He finished at 24-under 268. The eight-shot margin of victory was his largest ever, and it was one short of the tournament record set by David Duval since this event moved to Kapalua in 1999. Jordan Spieth also won by eight shots in 2016.
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